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Lawrence Casserley / Adam Linson: Integument

Glenn Astarita By

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Lawrence Casserley and bassist Adam Linson first became acquainted when the latter joined saxophonist Evan Parker's Electro-Acoustic Ensemble in 2004. In the album notes it is stated that the artists commenced a volley of email exchanges amid a suggestion by Parker, who said that they "have a free ranging dialogue." As conversations ensued, it led to the fruition of this two-day session.

The dialogue between these musicians is perhaps centered upon a continual reengineering process. In a loose sense, they convey notions of mad scientists who are splitting musical molecules. Here, Linson's bass lines provide a fractured rhythmic underpinning to Casserley's curiously interesting noise-shaping maneuvers on signal processor. With creaky drones and Casserley's slithery signal processing effects, the duo navigates through hallowed walls of doom while communicating in alien-speak. It's all in good fun, however.

Somewhat amazingly, the musicians conjure up resonating effects-based passages that are unique, especially when we consider the hordes of electronics-touched albums by jazz, rock and avant-garde performers. The duo dishes out asymmetrical cadences shaded with phased and windswept treatments as they seemingly work within a time capsule of sorts.

On "Basement Membrane," the twosome engages in a free-form dialogue, where Casserley's signal processing sounds like shards of metal spewing across the studio. Then Linson heightens the intensity due to his soaring arco bass phrasings that seem to extract notions of loneliness or isolation; vivid imagery is inherent within the preponderance of these pieces. Linson also employs live electronics and sampling to enhance the bizarre and largely polytonal dreamscapes. It's a entrancing effort that stands out in radiant colors among similar undertakings of this ilk.


Track Listing: Stratum Spongiosum; Squamous Epithelium; Wandering Leukocytes; Basement Membrane; Cycloids; Stratum Compactum; Chromatophores.

Personnel: Lawrence Casserley: signal processing instrument, voice (3, 6); Adam Linson: double-bass, live processing and sampling (3, 6).

Title: Integument | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Psi

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